And we came up with the idea of converting the whole arithmetic apparatus into a game similar
to pexeso (memory game). Pexeso is fun for kids. Thanks to their extraordinary memory,
they're really good at it, and so they like it. The basic principle of Mathesso is the same
– to find two jettons that are identical. No matter what the strange little squiggles on the
top and bottom of the jettons mean (those squiggles meaning numbers). And that's how we are
going to imprint the whole arithmetic into their mental system as easily as if they were
learning to talk. Using a special colour ruler children will easily substitute numbers with
colours and therefore learn the numbers as a byproduct of playing the game. But we don’t have
to tell them all of that. Nor do we need to burden them with the fact that by playing this game
they will create a backbone algorithmic system involving their subconscious knowledge of all
multiplication, division, powers, prime numbers, Fibonnacci numbers,
factorials and others. Nor will we bother them with the existence of phenomenon of zero and its
We'll just let them play.
This extraordinary game is the result of more than a decade of research into thinking, comprehension and learning, and its effect is invaluable despite its relative triviality. If the methodological procedures we have developed are followed, children will gain not only a fundamental understanding of arithmetic, but also a deep mathematical intuition and procedural logic. Indeed, the game has a fundamental overlap with number theory and game theory. Higher variants of Mathesso (see rules) require a constantly changing strategy depending on number of players and order in which the players play. In each turn, players can reveal either one or two cards at their discretion. Indeed, in higher versions of Mathesso, considerations need to include both the probability with which a player finds two identical cards and that their move gives the least amount of advice to other players. Understanding the different strategies in higher versions becomes crucial and arises quite naturally. Nonetheless, hereby we remind that we are still talking about playing memory game. None of the described herein requires any mathematical knowledge. By playing the game comes an intuitive understanding of probability calculus, strategic reasoning, risk fluctuation, and the ability for reflective calculations and parallel thinking. And most importantly, insight into how beautiful mathematics is and that its beauty is simply no accident. That beauty itself is not accidental.
Other bonuses that arise from playing Mathesso are advanced concentration and the ability to orient in a large set of confusing information. Children also practice memory and fine motor skills.
Eventhough Mathesso is specially designed to be played by preschoolers who have not learnt to read and write yet, older children and adults will find it very mind-opening too. However, for the above mentioned effects to occur, methodical procedures must be followed and, above all, the game needs to be practised on regular basis. It is not a magic pill and to achieve the full effect that Mathesso offers requires certain amount of effort. The more active blockings in mathematics the more effort it will require to get rid of them. But don’t worry. The effect will always come. You just have to persevere and play.